Computer simulation for elastomers

Computer simulation for elastomersTWO US companies Endurica, producer of simulation system technology, and analysis software provider Safe
Technology have partnered to produce fe-safe/Rubber, a solution for computer simulation of fatigue failure in elastomers. This allows analysts responsible for the durability of elastomeric products to have a validated method that enables them to investigate, at the inception of a design change, the issues that will determine
product durability.

Similar solutions for fatigue analysis from FEA of metallic components have been available for many years and have become an essential part of maturing and qualifying design concepts, providing a cost-effective
and proven basis for justifying investment in physical prototypes and testing. But the metal fatigue codes do not work well for rubber components as they do not consider rubber’s unique structure and non-linear behaviour, notes Safe Technology.

The new technology handles rubber’s finitestrain kinematics, hyperelastic stress-strain behaviour, strain crystallisation, temperature-dependence and other effects, such as ozone attack. These effects have been captured in the model and integrated with widely accepted procedures, such as critical plane analysis, fracture mechanics and rainflow counting, to provide a complete system capable of accounting for complex
duty cycles, including multi-axial loadings and variable amplitudes.

The US Army is among the first users of the technology, applying it to develop rubber components in the track system of military ground vehicles. Other early interest has come from the heavy equipment, consumer
products, offshore, medical devices and automotive sectors.

Endurica’s patented technology is now available from Safe Technology as a stand alone product. A fully integrated version of the technology, taking advantage of fe-safe’s user interface and direct links to FEA codes, will be available in 2012.

The technology will support all major FEA codes including Abaqus, ANSYS, NASTRAN (MSC, NEi,NX), Pro-M and Ideas.(PRA)